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The Footprints of God review
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6/6/2008 11:42 PM
    Since the earliest years of Science Fiction, Artificial Intelligence has been heavily speculated upon.
    Robots are of course one of the natural progressions for this, and the same goes with computers. After all, you can’t really have a robot without a computer; it’s kind of like having a human without a brain.
    They just have to go together. In the case of humans, we can’t survive without our brain, and visa versa, however, with robots, the computer can exist outside the robot… eh, never mind.
    The interesting thing about Greg Iles The Footprint of God is that it deals with the creation of the worlds first and most powerful Artificial Intelligence.
    And the novel also delves into an aspect of society that many people find uncomfortable… the mixing of religion and science.
    As is the case, I can’t really go into too much detail about the novel because that would end up giving away some spoilers, and I loath to do that.
    The story revolves around Dr. David Tennant, a man hired specifically to be the ethical heart of Project Trinity, the group tasked with the creation of this powerful computer system.
    The problem is that his friend and co-worker recently died of a stroke… but he knows it wasn’t a stroke, the man was murdered. He just doesn’t have any way of proving this fact.
    And, there is also this little problem… He keeps having visions, always brought on by his bouts of Narcolepsy.
    Once again, I can’t go into any details about these visions, as it would give away far too much when it comes to the plot of the novel.
    Between his visions, and his knowledge, he finds himself on the run from the NSA, the group responsible for the creation of the Trinity Project.
    Caught up in this race is his psychiatrist, Rachel Weiss, who harbours a secret of her own, and who wants to believe what is happening to Tennant, but her training keeps standing in the way.
    The novel is a race, one of keeping a single step ahead of those who want to stop him from revealing what he knows to the world. Paranoia runs rampant in the book and for good reason.
    I’ll say this; it was very fast paced and quite the thriller. I had a hard time putting it down, even when it got into the whole religion aspect. I’m not big on religion, as those who know me understand.
    Still, despite this, the book had a very unique take on religion and things that cause one person to turn away from god, and another to embrace their faith.
    The whole aspect of the artificial intelligence was also a unique take on the time honoured plot device. Something that I’ve never seen before used in a book, and it was quite refreshing.
    Of course, as one would expect, the book comes to quite the explosive climax that had me sitting on the edge of my seat as I read the events that led up to it.
    I also liked how the novel ended. Again, I can’t say anything without giving away hints that would lead you, the reader, to guess at what happened.
    Worth reading,
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